TEDxPeachtree: A Very Personal Talk

TEDxPeachtree - a Very Personal TalkBrass Tack Thinking is usually where you’ll find me talking about business-y stuff. Professional life, experience, the world of social business, that kind of thing.

I hope you’ll permit me a slight departure today as I share with you the distinct honor I’ll have to speak at TEDxPeachtree on November 2nd at the Buckhead Theater in Atlanta.

But I’m not giving a business speech this time. I won’t be talking about social media or communities or change management or any of my usual stuff. I’ll be talking about something much more personal, and something that has been a part of both my personal and professional life now for over 20 years.

My talk is called Mind Games: Transcending the Messiness of Mental Illness.

I’ll be sharing my very imperfect journey and experiences with both depression and anxiety issues throughout my adult life, the stigmas we still hold around mental illness that prevent so many people from talking about it, how it collides with our professional worlds, and a little bit about what I’ve learned along the way.

The theme of TEDxPeachtree this year is Transcend, so this is a super fitting topic for me to tackle. Depression and anxiety are a very real part of who I am, but they don’t have to define me, and they don’t have to define you either. My special thanks to TedXPeachtree organizer Jacqui Chew, a lovely woman and brilliant business mind who encouraged me to pursue this topic. It’s sure to be a speech that’s intensely personal and scary for me to deliver, but I’m also very excited because I can’t wait to let others like me know and see that they are never, ever alone.

If you’d like to join us in Atlanta on November 2nd, you can purchase TEDxPeachtree tickets as of today on their website. I would love to see many of you there, and I’d love to hear your stories.

I don’t think we can ever shine enough light on the darkness that so many people feel and experience because of depression, anxiety disorders, and other mental health challenges. The more we speak out, the more we show that we can transcend them and overcome them and live life to the fullest in the face of our illness, the more people will be able to find help, support, and the courage to ask for it.

Thank you to all of my dearest and closest friends who have long supported me in my own journey, and who cheered me on to give this talk. I truly hope it’s inspirational and helpful to even one person. That much can make an enormous difference.

See you in Atlanta!

  • http://twitter.com/swoodruff Steve Woodruff

    So glad you’re doing this, Amber. Can’t wait to see the video!

  • http://www.redheadwriting.com The Redhead

    Congrats, gorgeous. I’m pretty sure I’ll be making the trip out to TEDx Peachtree again this year and should that all come together, I’m stoked to be able to see this live under the lights!

  • jacquichew

    You are such an inspiration to me and i know, many others. Thank you for the kind words but it is your courage and willingness to shine a light on mental illness that epitomizes brilliance.

    I admit that i consider it a personal coup to have gotten you to agree to speak out in this fashion. :-) Atlanta and the world will be waiting.

  • Marcie101

    Wonderful! I’m so glad to hear that you are talking about this in a respected public forum. Stigma needs to be replaced with a voice of recovery. :) Please post a link to the video as soon as it’s available.

  • http://twitter.com/belllindsay Lindsay Bell

    Very brave Amber. As a fellow “sufferer” (though really, I don’t suffer as much as *overcome*!!) of all of the above, I am deeply impressed by you tackling this topic. Wish I could be there. Cheers, LB 

  • http://twitter.com/rickjmiv Rick Morgan

    Very brave and courageous. Congratulations! 

  • B Reed

    Bravo for your courage and leadership!

  • kristathomas

    Brilliant and brave as always — looking forward to the video too!

  • Ian

    Amber, fabulous that you are sharing on such a tough matter. Being a fellow anxiety sufferer I look forward to being able to watch the video at some time post the event. All the very best in your preparation.


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